Carpets are all about creating a warmer, fuzzier feeling. That’s why people use them pretty much anywhere, from residential to office buildings. And it’s also the reason why carpet cleaning is a topic of interest to many homeowners and even office administrators.
Unfortunately, the warm fuzzy feelings last as long as the carpets are clean and fluffy. Once the thrill is gone and the floors start showing those nasty signs of wear and tear, you begin to wonder about your cleaning options: professional or DIY?
If you’re in a situation like the one we just mentioned, you’re a little late.
Carpet cleaning should be a maintenance cleaning task.
Manufacturers recommend cleaning your carpets every 12 to 18 months, sometimes even sooner, depending on the traffic. Furthermore, many warranties depend on this maintenance requirement. But even so, most carpet owners only do it every few years.
Do you, too, think it’s better later than never? You’re probably right. But aside from “when”, there’s also a “how” that plays a significant role in the equation. That’s why we’d like to walk you through how and what it takes to have clean, fluffy carpets again, with hot water extraction carpet cleaning.
This is the most effective carpet steam cleaning method currently on the market, though not everyone knows what it implies.
Is carpet steam cleaning the same with shampooing the carpets?
And what about the hot water extraction?
These questions are often intertwined, and many would tell you that steam cleaning and hot water extraction are the same. That’s not technically true.
In practice, shampooing the carpets and applying steam are two necessary parts of effective carpet cleaning. If you try to take them separately, you could…
- Give your carpet a good rub using a ton of shampoo. But then you would still have to rinse all the shampoo, soak it up, and dab all the water. By the way, we don’t recommend you do this at home!
- Or try a steam cleaning treatment. This one, in the absence of the right cleaning solution and a powerful carpet cleaning machine, can also get you into trouble:- Either the stains shortly reappear after you have cleaned the carpet yourself…- Or the carpet remains all damp, which leaves room for mold and mildew to start flourishing.
Luckily, there’s the hot water extraction carpet cleaning option you have at hand. You can try the DIY method or the safe, professional method. Either way, the process should be the same
What is hot water extraction, and why is it your best choice?
With this carpet steam cleaning method, you’re combining the force of steam cleaning and carpet shampooing. You’re not just using the right amount of cleaning solution. You also throw in the minimum amount of water. And you make use of the highest suction force, to extract that water, along with the cleaning solution and all the dirt and debris it decomposed.
When making the right choice, you will be able to:
- Effectively remove all kinds of stains;
- Give your carpets a bright and shiny new look, reviving their aspect for good;
- Make the carpet fibers bounce back and improve the carpet’s performances;
- And through it all, extend the carpet’s life.
At its core, steam carpet cleaning is all about using hot water with the right cleaning agents. The mixture pushes into the carpet pile with high pressure. Due to the chemical structure of the cleaning agent, all the dirt, the grime, and the soil start dismantling. Adding the moisture and the pressure, it’s almost a winning combo.
The second part of the cleaning process brings a high-powered vacuum into play. The vacuum removes the hot water along with everything else trapped between the rug fibers. And that’s when you call it mission accomplished!
To handle or not to handle steam carpet cleaning yourself?
Professional carpet cleaning vs do it yourself
As already mentioned, everyone has these two main options: to hire a cleaning service provider or to try and tackle this chore on their own. Of course, the second option still implies using a steam cleaning unit.
But here’s a fact: most people don’t have a carpet steam cleaner of their own.
And given how often they make the effort of cleaning up their carpets, they wouldn’t find it necessary to buy one either. So, if you’re contemplating this option, you’re looking to rent one, right?
The number one reason why people would take this path is to save a few extra bucks. What most of them don’t even realize until they’re trapped in the middle of the problem is that…
“Saving a little money is just about the only advantage of DIY steam carpet cleaning.
And if you’re doing it wrong, saving, too, becomes an illusion.”
In reality, you do a lot more than the actual cleaning work:
- You have to do some research and pick up the cleaning unit you’d like to rent;
- You must also shop for cleaning products after you’ve researched which one is best for your particular type of rug or carpet;
- You need to go to the store, not once, but twice – remember you must also bring it back once you finish the work;
- You’ll have to give it a big part of your weekend – not just for the actual cleanup, but also for getting used with the cleaning unit and seeing exactly how it works;
– Don’t forget it is one thing to read about it and a completely different thing to stare at it and start using it;
- And through it all, you are running against the clock – you’ve rented the unit for a limited time, and you need to do the entire above within that time frame.
All these disadvantages and we haven’t even mentioned the troubles you can get yourself into if you choose the wrong type of detergent. Or if you’re using too much or too little detergent… Talk about:
- Damaging the carpet;
- Not cleaning it properly;
- Getting sticky residue on its fibers;
– Which leads to the formation of new stains soon after that;
- Ending up with a damp carpet that is taking too long to dry;
– This serves as a perfect base for mold and mildew to start spreading.
If we had to add, most of the cleaning equipment available for rental is low quality. Those who buy it with the specific purpose of renting it know better. Expecting it to be used by inexperienced people and deteriorate pretty fast, they don’t go for the top-tier technology.
Using average-quality products, combined with the learning curve it takes for using it properly, you can expect average or below-average results.
So, are you still sure you are saving anything? And how about the real costs of making this small saving? How do all of the above translate into how much you’re paying to do it yourself?
If you don’t like the answers to these questions (and you shouldn’t), let’s make an effort and picture what it’s like to opt for professional carpet cleaning services.
A roundup of why professional carpet cleaning wins over DIY
The main drawback – which isn’t a dealbreaker – is that you have to pay more. But that’s just about all on the cons. On the plus side, you will:
- Make the minimum effort – as in picking up the phone and calling a cleaning company to handle the task.
- Stay at home – no trips to the store, no carpet cleaning products shopping.
- Relax and stop worrying about the moisture or residues that could have remained trapped within the carpet fibers.
- Know for a fact that you benefit from deep-down cleaning – professional cleaning services have the winning recipe, from knowing what equipment to bring to knowing what detergents to use and how to combine it.
Moreover, professional cleaners have professional solutions for a lot more than regular dirt. You can ask their help for anything from dirt and spills or regular stains to pet traffic or even fleas, mites, and other types of pest infestations.
What should you take away from this analysis?
First of all, that steam carpet cleaning professional services should always win over the DIY.
And second of all, you should take this chore more seriously!
If you make a habit of regularly scheduling carpet cleaning sessions, it will all work out smoother. Your carpets will always be easier to clean. They will last longer. And you’ll have to change them for new ones a lot later.
That’s how paying a few extra bucks for carpet cleaning services helps you save not just time and mental sanity, but also money in the long run!